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“They’re dead, Jim.”
Like the red-shirted crewman in the original series of Star Trek*, the poisonous divisional has apparently breathed its last, though in this case in the comfortable home (for the time being) of the Boards of Appeal in the Isar building of the EPO, rather than a few miles outside of Los Angeles at the Vasquez Rocks where pretty much every episode of Star Trek appears to have been partially filmed.
In this case, the fatal weapon was not a phaser, but a blunt instrument of similar vintage – FICPI Memorandum C (M/48/I) of the travaux préparatoires to the EPC 1973. The analysis of partial priority in this document was used heavily by the Enlarged Board in G1/15 (see 5.2.1 in particular) to indicate how partial priority was embedded in the European patent system, and how it allowed a resounding “No” to be given to the first question referred to the Enlarged Board of Appeal, repeated in all its tongue-tripping elegance below: (more…)